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My quick summary – this series is about Jory, a fun-loving, big-hearted, gorgeous young man with a penchant for getting himself into trouble. He falls in love with a grunting, alpha cop, Sam, who’s GFY experience, leaves him figuring out life and then living every moment of it lovin’ his boy Jory. *swoon*
Here are the blurbs of the individual stories:
I first read this series in October 2012 and rated each individual book between 3 – 3.5 stars. I enjoyed it, consumed it in a weekend, and in my mind, it was the kind of series that served a purpose. It was a series about too-perfect characters, in too-perfect relationships, with too-perfect HEA’s. But I eat that shit up with a smile and that was the bucket I placed Jory & Sam (and every Mary Calmes book moving forward) in…my modern fairy tale/guilty pleasure reads.
Now, I very rarely reread books. Too little time to get to read all the books out there even once! And I always just assume the stories will never be as good as the first time. But when a friend jumped into reading this series recently, and loving it, I was tempted. And life was busy and challenging, and I needed that comforting, predicatable read, so I dusted off those mobi files and jumped in.
Huh…go figure. It was SO MUCH BETTER for me this time through. Yes, I enjoyed it as I had the first time. But so much was lost on me or overlooked that original read-through. And all those assumptions I made about the too-perfectness of everything? I think I *may* have been unfair in that assessment.
The books are told from Jory’s 1st person POV…and what I missed the first read-through is that…hey, we’re in Jory’s head. And Jory sees things a certain way. And he processes things a certain way. And that doesn’t always make it the way things are…but the way that he makes them fit for himself. And it released, for me, so many new nuggets and removed so many old niggles.
The “everybody loves Jory” syndrome that started to wear on me in the past, didn’t bother me as much this time through. Because what was interesting is that Jory didn’t always love Jory. He didn’t see himself as beautiful despite everyone saying so. He didn’t see himself as a catch, despite everyone wanting him. He was “just Jory”…and for that, I came to love him more than I had.
And that grunting, emotionally-stunted, neanderthal Sam? Well, let’s be honest, I loved me some Sam from the get-go. But, I LOVED ME SOME SAM this readthrough. Sam is scared, not as tough as he seems. He’s an all or nothing kind of guy. He doesn’t always process his emotions. But when he does, it’s done. No discussion…no need to worry…it just IS.
And Jory and Sam? Where I used to think their relationship was this easy insta-love thing, I came to realize that what it actually was was 2 guys who loved each other with such abandon, with such care, because they’re each the only one who could handle the other…not the perfection, but the imperfections. Their love was INEVITABLE. As Jory puts it “the sun shined, the rain fell, and Sam Kage loved me”.
Now, things that hurt me the first time through, that tainted my happy place…exits, misunderstandings, time apart, other people…they FIT and made more sense this time through. Again, details I’d missed that the author subtlely sprinkles throughout the story, I discovered. And it allowed me to accept how things played out and not hold my own emotions against the characters. And it helped me see the author, Mary Calmes, in a totally new light. She’s always told a good story…but damn, she can tell a surprisingly layered one too. I missed that from the first read. Found it in this one.
Is this series perfect? No. And I think the books get progressively weaker as you go along, with Book 5, Bulletproof, being my least favorite. BUT…is it better than I had originally thought? YES and then some. It really is more than meets the eye.
So, if you haven’t read this series, I say go for it…it’s fun, it’s sexy, and it’s entertaining. But don’t get lost in the “mine”s and the “eyebrow waggles” and the “Sam!”s and all those little tell-tale Calmes bits on the surface. Allow yourself to get to know and understand Jory, Sam, and Jory & Sam.
And if you’ve read it before and dismissed it as just a basic, feel-good read, well…I encourage you to give it another go. I think you’ll find it’s much much more there.
Title: A Matter of Time Series
Author: Mary Calmes
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 6 books
Purchase Links: Dreamspinner